Guwahati, July 21: The book named “Citizenship Debate over NRC & CAA: Assam and Politics of History” by Nani Gopal Mahanta will be launched by RSS Sarsanghchalak Mohan Bhagwat on July 21 at 11 a.m. Assam CM Himanta Biswa Sarma will also be present.
A professor at Gauhati University, Nani Gopal Mahanta, has remarked that one of the greatest features of the book will be the great archival footage that dates back to the 50s.
He said, “It is a book that contains several identity-related issues in Assam and also particularly to burning issues that not only concern Assam but the whole country regarding NRC and CAA 2019.”
According to him, the protest in Assam or different parts of India, as if the CAA had all of a sudden erupted, is not new. He said, “No it is not. There is a historical context to that. Those are the people who are displaced who have been denied certain rights but of course, it cannot be an open-ended question.”
He added, “I try to say that this CAA and NRC cannot be seen in isolation. They are not against a particular community, particularly CAA. It’s about giving the legitimate right to certain displaced people who were denied certain rights, right to life in Pakistan and East Bengal.”
In the book, we will see how the trajectory is “becoming palpable in case of Assam and to how the question of NRC and CAA 2019 cannot be seen in isolation precisely”, through historical archives.
Mahanta said, “There was this historical context under which a smaller nationality, Assamese nationality was to be subjugated, was to be outnumbered by the immigrant groups and immediately after partition. My argument is that NRC and CAA 2019, is a legacy of partition. It is a burden that we have been carrying since partition and that’s how those people were displaced from East Bengal, particularly Bengali Hindus were considered as refugees.”
He also argues that similar treatment was not given to those people who were immigrants because they came out of economic compulsion not out of their fear of life.
“India had this historical responsibility to those Bengali Hindus who were displaced who had the fear of life in East Bengal or Pakistan,” exclaimed the author.
Hindu, Christian, Buddhist, Jain, Sikh, and Parsi migrants who came to India illegally, without a visa, on or before December 31, 2014, from the Muslim-majority countries of Pakistan, Afghanistan, or Bangladesh and stayed for five years are eligible to apply for Indian citizenship, according to the CAA.
People of these six faiths, according to the Union government, have suffered persecution in these three Islamic countries, but Muslims have not. As a result, it is India’s moral obligation to provide them with shelter.
Despite the fact that this law includes refugees from three countries, the indigenous people of Assam are concerned that it will primarily benefit illegal Bengali Hindu migrants from Bangladesh, who have migrated significantly and they may outnumber Assamese people in the state. The book is a historical analysis of identity politics and, NRC and CAA in Assam.